Law & Order: SVU stars back together again! Mariska Hargitay recently reunited with one of her former castmates and fans are really in the feels. Watch the video of the nostalgic moment between Olivia Benson and this fan-favorite character below.
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (known as Law & Order: SVU or just SVU), is NBC's crime drama created and produced by Dick Wolf's Wolf Entertainment. It's the first spin-off of Law & Order and follows a group of specially trained detectives in the New York City Police Department that investigate sexually related crimes. Hargitay has played Commanding Officer Olivia Benson of the Manhattan Special Victims Unit since the very first season aired in 1999.
Although production for Season 25 of Law & Order: SVU is halted because of the ongoing writers' and actors' strike – a few weeks before the actors joined the strike – Hargitay had lunch with a very special guest during her summer vacation. She shared a video of the surprise meeting to Instagram on July 7, 2023.
"Oh sure, I'm on vacation, but I do have a present for you. That's right. 'Cause you know what I'm thinking about… you. And action! " the real-life Benson teased before turning the camera around to reveal Andy Karl, who appeared throughout Season 17 of SVU.
Karl portrayed Sergeant Michael "Mike" Dodds for 15 episodes of SVU. We first saw his character in Season 17, Episode 6, "Maternal Instincts," when he was transferred to the unit by his father, Deputy Chief William Dodds. He quickly became a beloved member of the unit and helped catch dangerous criminals with the team throughout Season 17.
Unfortunately, Dodds' time with Manhattan's Special Victims Unit came to a devastating end in Season 17, Episode 23, "Heartfelt Passages." The Sergeant was murdered after a corrupt prison guard and serial rapist took him and another victim hostage. Although fans thought Dodds might pull through at the end, he suffered a massive stroke and was left brain dead. It was one of the toughest character losses in SVU history.
Karl reshared Hargitay's video of their lunch date, where he also joined the actress' family. "Once the squad always the squad. Lunch with @therealmariskahargitay and family was a blast. #TheGiftThatKeepsOnGiving #BabyDodds #NewNewGuy #SVU," he captioned the post before the actors' strike. Since SVU, Karl has starred in dozens of theatrical productions on Broadway and West End, including Into the Woods, Pretty Woman: The Musical and Groundhog Day.